Ugandan government shamefully claims queer people fleeing its homophobia are fake ‘economic gays’

The Ugandan government has made the absurd, offensive claim that some LGBT+ asylum seekers fleeing the country are merely faking their sexuality to live in Western nations.

Homosexuality is illegal and punishable by life imprisonment in Uganda, which has some of the strictest anti-LGBT+ laws in the world. Most queer Ugandans survive by staying under the radar, and many who manage to escape fear death if they return.

Yet foreign minister general Jeje Odongo cast doubt on the legitimacy of queer asylum claims by pointing out that many male gay asylum seekers have wives and children.

“These Ugandans who went out on the pretext of being homosexuals. Now their lie is catching up with them because when they settle, they ask to bring their wives and children,” he said, according to Daily Sabah.

“It is unfortunate that some people who are not gays pretend to be gays so that they get citizenship in countries which sympathise with them. Such people will make developed countries lose trust in all Africans.”

The fact that many gay asylum seekers have wives is hardly surprising in a country where so many gay men are closeted, and societal pressure to marry and have children is strong.

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